Friday, 07 October 2016 11:05

Blue Streaks Hall of Fame Induction October 7

SARATOGA SPRINGS — In the beginning, there was just one. Ray Waldron, former Saratoga Springs City School District athletic director, coach, and teacher was the first and only member of the Blue Streak Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2009. Current athletic director, Peter Sheehan, had nothing but praise for Waldron, making that solitary honor something treasured. Since then, the Hall of Fame has had 61 inductees, including former ice hockey Olympian Kathleen Kauth; former LPGA champion golfer Dottie Pepper; legendary football coach Blaise Iuliano; and one of his students, NFL coach and former defensive end, Anthony Weaver. On Friday, October 7, at 4:30 p.m. in the Loewenberg Auditorium, the school district will honor eight outstanding individuals for their extraordinary contributions to athletics, inducting them into the Blue Streak Athletic Hall of Fame at Saratoga Springs High School. This year’s inductees are Cassie Beckwith, Ronald Bostick, Danielle Coon-Messenger, Hannah Davidson, Scott Ewing, Damian Fantauzzi, Susan Hoffman, and Hutchin Tibbetts. Narvia Bostick will accept the award on behalf of her husband, who passed away in 2009. “The ceremony is open to the public; folks are welcome to attend,” said Sheehan. “It’s a nice way to recognize all these individuals for their accomplishments in the Saratoga Springs athletics department.” Hoffman was a physical education teacher and coach at Saratoga Springs from 1975-2012. She coached varsity field hockey for 22 years of those years, but also coached basketball, volleyball, softball, lacrosse and swimming. Her numerous accomplishments in addition will be acknowledged during the induction ceremony. Hoffman said it is the human moments that she remembers most. “It’s knowing that a player ‘got it,’” she said. “The first time she scores a goal, the first she picks up a ground ball, or realizing she’s stronger than she thought she was. One little girl [modified] gets her number 11 jersey and says ‘I waited my whole life to get my Saratoga uniform.’ It was a big moment, the first time they are representing the school. It’s things like that that all add up to a rewarding career.” Damian Fantauzzi was an art teacher and coach for Saratoga Springs High School for 34 years. He coached varsity and JV boys basketball for 19 years, JV tennis for 22 years, and track for 17 years, as well as other levels of those sports. He had numerous additional accomplishments, as well, which will be acknowledged during the induction ceremony. Fantauzzi said he feels good about the induction. “But these things happen because of the players and the athletes that you have had,” he said. “You have good teams because you have good players. This honor they are giving to me is an honor given to all my former players. Girls and boys.” Fantauzzi is not only grateful to his players, but also to his family for his successful coaching career. “They have to make the same sacrifices we make as coaches,” said Fantauzzi. “My wife and kids were phenomenal. They backed me up and always supported me. My wife, Ann, is my best friend.”
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